9/11 Responders Gather to Remind Congress to Extend Healthcare

Susanne.Posel-Headline.News.Official- 911.responders.congress.healthcare.compensation.expire_occupycorporatismSusanne Posel ,Chief Editor Occupy Corporatism | Co-Founder, Legacy Bio-Naturals
September 6, 2015


At the World Trade Center (WTC), tens of thousands of 9/11 rescue workers gathered to demand that Congress extend free healthcare to those exposed to toxic dust following the terrorist attack.

The $4.3 billion James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act is set to begin to expire this October, should Congress not extend the bill.

Joining the demonstrators were members of the House of Representatives including:

• Carolyn Maloney
• Jerold Nadler
• Peter King
• Charles Rangel
• Elliot Engle
• Frank Pallone

Maloney told the press : “Seventy thousand people in 50 states are now being monitored for health problems related to 9/11 as a result of the act, including 33,000 who are sick or injured because of the attacks. Since 9/11, 3,700 people have been diagnosed with cancers related to conditions at Ground Zero. As many as 85 city police officers and more than 110 firefighters have died from 9/11-related illnesses.”

King added: “This is beyond debate. It’s inexcusable if we allow this to lapse.”

Federal programs were previously put in place to offer free or low-cost aid to 9/11 firefighters, construction workers and volunteers who were under observation and treatment for a plethora of physiological responses due to their service.

Called the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP), this legislation secured $2.7 billion to be disbursed over the several thousands of victims applying for payment compensation.

The free healthcare offered by the WTCHP will expire this October, while the Victim Compensation Fund (which reimburses responders and survivors for medical care and lost wages) will shut down by October 2016.

The VCF currently pays out to 7,000 survivors and workers who sustained 9/11-related injuries.

It was because of the pressure placed by 9/11 survivors lobbying Congress to provide such a program exists at all. Due to the rise of asthma, lung disease and cancer in 9/11 first responders, the families of the victims worked to convince the federal government that secured funding for healthcare was a necessity.

The WTCHP is set to expire in 2016 and advocates warn now that those injured and seeking medical treatment is expanding which would necessitate more funding to compensate every ill worker.

Because there are many who suffer from complicated and often times incurable illnesses, the WTCHP cannot be allowed to lapse.

When the WTCHP was created, Congress intended its limited reach to gage the overall long-term cost of such an endeavor.

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